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Chestnut Heath

Coenonympha glycerion

  • Family: Brushfooted Butterflies – Nymphalidae
  • Subfamily: Browns – Satyrinae
  • Wing span: Small, 25–34 mm (0.98–1.33 in.).
  • Wing upper side: Male forewing brown–brownish orange, female beige–yellow. Forewing apex possibly with eyespot markings. Hind wing brown, often with small eyespots (brownish orange with black spot in middle) next to brownish orange strip along edge.
  • Wing underside: Male forewing brownish orange, female beige–yellow with grey edge, especially females with eyespots along edge of wing. Hind wing greyish brown with row of eyespots. Eyespots with white core, black centre and bordered by pale yellow ring. Two white patches at base of eyespots. Hind wing and sometimes also forewing edge with orange and shiny silver stripe.
  • Habitat: Meadows and grazing land.
  • Flying time: Mid-June–late July.
  • Overwintering form: Caterpillar.
  • Larval foodplant: Different grasses (Poaceae), especially tufted hair-grass (Deschampsia caespitosa).

The chestnut heath is quite abundant in places around southern and central Finland, but it always rests with its wings pressed together, which makes the upper side difficult to study without catching it. The species is very much like small heath and large heath, but chestnut heath differs from them with the orange and shiny silver strive that runs around the edge of its wings. The small heath is also lacking the eyespots on the underside of the wing that are typical of the chestnut heath.

Females lay their eggs individually on the leaves of the foodplant. The species overwinters as a semi-grown caterpillar.

Other species from the same genus
Other species from the same group

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